A taste of Morocco Wednesday, Jan 25 2012 

Paris Grocery News
January 25th, 2011

Have you missed us?We hope you all survived the great snow storm of 2012 and have been keeping warm. It’s certainly a time for hot food and good company. With the holidays past, I’ve had most of my ‘home favorites’ and am ready to branch out and try something new. It’s a new year, and time for explorations! This week, I headed to North Africa for inspiration and am attempting to cook a Chicken Bastilla

Warm, flakey pastry filled with the unorthodox but outstanding combination of chicken (traditionally pigeon but who has time to go pigeon trapping these days?), blanched almonds($7.99/lb), Moroccan spices, orange blossom water ($5.99) and powdered sugar. Warca, also known as Feuille de Brique ($4.29), is the secret to the puffed, airy layers that bring a lightness to the otherwise extremely rich, nutty and spicy dish. !

For lunch, pair the Bastilla with our new signature Paris Grocery Moroccan mint tea ~$2.00/16 oz

For dinner, pair it with the 2009 Alain Graillot Syrocco ‘Zenata’ $19.99

This 100% Syrah possesses lots of soft, jammy, berry fruit, licorice, pepper and meaty notes. Tasty, plump, and altogether hedonistic, this wine is ideal for drinking over the next several years.

Of course, we’ve got to rave about a few more wine at PG this week, as long as we’ve got your ear:

2010 Cercius Cotes du Rhone Vielles Vignes $15.99

“Wow, is this an exciting wine! A custom cuvee put together by importer Eric Solomon along with the brilliant oenologist Philippe Cambie and Costieres de Nimes’ up-and-coming superstar, Michel Gassier, this blend of 85% Grenache and 15% Syrah (and there are 5,000 cases for the US) comes from the 70- to 80-year-old Grenache vines on the plateau of Domazan to the south of Chateauneuf du Pape. This sensational wine tastes more like Chateauneuf du Pape than just about any Cotes du Rhone one is likely to find. It is also another example of what looks to be another great vintage emerging from the southern Rhone – 2010. This is one of the greatest Cotes du Rhones I have ever tasted – wonderfully intense, deep ruby with some purple tinges, with a stunning nose of black raspberry liqueur intermixed with sweet cherries, licorice, pepper and Provencal lavender. Round, generous, opulent and heady, this fabulously intense, hedonistic wine should be drunk over the next 3-4 years. Bravo!” 93 points Wine Advocate

Georges Duboef Macon-Villages Chardonnay 2009 $9.99

This 100% chardonnay from Burgundy is un-oaked, making it fresh and floral with a beautiful nose. bright fruits are balanced by almond and a minerality that carries the lengthy finish. It’s a real treat at this price.

 

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Thanks for reading, stay warm, and we’ll see you in the shop!

Ellen

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News 8/6 Saturday, Aug 6 2011 

This is my last newsletter for Paris Grocery. I’d like to say thanks to all of you who came into the shop (sometimes with color printouts of the newsletter, ready to use as a shopping list) and said nice things about the writing. It was always really pleasing to hear that you liked it. To say goodbye, I’m going to feature my all-time favorite things here in the shop. You can bet I’ll be stocking up before I leave.

Thanks for being such fun customers, and bon appétit,

Rachel

Will always be in style, will never break: the Picardie salad bowl.

Duralex “Picardie” Salad Bowl

I love this stuff, especially the iconic Picardie tumblers, which to me represent the Platonic ideal of a glass. We carry the tumblers in four sizes, and we also have ramekins, bowls, and plates. Before I leave today, I’m picking up the salad bowl (only $9!) for all my summer salads and for a never-break mixing bowl.

Trust me, these are delicious.

Dolin Vermouth de Chambéry

The only Vermouth that has earned an AOC designation. Dolin has none of the cloying sweetness or overly bitter qualities found in bottom-shelf Vermouths. The particular mixture of plants found near Chambéry give a fresh, restrained, and elegant nose with a subtle, complex, and bittersweet palate. I love this on its own with ice and a hefty piece of lemon peel, but it’s also great in cocktails. $13.99

André Neveu “Le Grand Fricambault” Sancerre Rosé 2010

André Neveu’s vineyards are located in Chavignol, on the silex soil of Sancerre’s hillsides. This exquisite, highly aromatic pinot noir rosé reflects this flinty terrain. Light yet concentrated, it exudes aromas of fresh strawberries and offers unbelievable minerality. While any day of the week, you might find me sipping any one of our incredibly tasty value roses, this is the one I’d really like to treat myself to. $24.99

Alpha Loire Domaines “Sables Blonds” Touraine Rouge 2009

This 100% Cabernet Franc is loaded with minerals and notes of earth and dark berries. It’s juicy and lightly tannic, making it ideal for a range of dishes, from pizza to vegetable tarts to flank steak. This is one versatile red, and is a great entry level choice for those wanting to try out cab francs. $9.99

Domaine Pierre Sparr Marquis de Perlade

Made in the traditional method, this sparkling wine is a blend of Pinot Blanc, Chenin Blanc, Macabeu and Chardonnay from the wonderful Alsatian producer Pierre Sparr. Crisp, with lovely notes of green apple and a touch of honey and toast, this sparkling wine complements a big sweet and savory spreads, such as charcuterie, cheese platters, fruit, and nuts. While working here, this became my go-to festive sparkler, so now when I taste it, it reminds me of Christmas, birthdays, and raucous brunches with friends. $9.99

Lovely boxes, amazing teas.

Kusmi Tea

This stuff is so good! FloFab recently sang its praises, noting its beginnings as “the tea of the czars in 1867 in St. Petersburg.” Kusmi is now based in Paris, and its lovely black tea blends, often scented with flowers, citrus, or vanilla, have many fans. The packaging is really pretty, and each box comes with 20 muslin tea bags for $15.99 In stock now:

  • Russian Morning: a classic breakfast blend of China, Ceylon, and India teas.
  • Prince Vladimir: a Russian-style blend of China black teas with lemon, grapefruit, and spices.
  • Anastasia (as in, the princess): Earl Grey with lemon, lime, and bergamot.

Tarragon, Walnut, and Piment d'Espelette.

Mustards!

Oh, yes. Mustard sells like crazy here at the shop, because it is delicious. My favorites are Edmond Fallot Tarragon Dijon (awesomely vivid green and excellent with meats, vegetables, or in potato salad) and Walnut Dijon (so good on ham and cheese sandwiches). A new item that I’ve been enjoying is the Parfum des Oliviers Mustard à la L’Ancienne au Coulis de Piment d’Espelette (grain-style mustard with Basque pepper). It adds texture and spices to meats. Vive la moutarde!

You can look forward to future newsletters and updates from the rest of the staff of Paris Grocery and the Spanish Table!

Thanks for reading,

Rachel

and

Steve Winston and Sharon Baden

Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News 6/10 Friday, Jun 10 2011 

Snacks that do a lot of work.

Food @ PG

When summer comes, it’s nice give the stove and oven a break as much as possible. Grab a jar of something savory and add it to cold pasta, salads, and snack plates. Try a flavorful terrine or pâté for a simple sandwich that doesn’t sacrifice on flavor. Or consider a high-quality snack from the freezer. Here are our new favorite snacks that make life easy.

Grilled Fennel by Ritrovo

Set in olive oil with a bit of white wine, garlic, and parsley. Add to a tapas plate along roasted red peppers and some rustic charcuterie. ($10.99/10-oz. jar)

Marinated Carrots with Fennel by Arthur Épicerie Fine

Yep, we’re a little obsessed with fennel. Set in sea salt, these carrots and fennel taste unbelievably fresh. They’d be great with a plate of smoked salmon and a glass of cold white wine. ($6.49/10-oz. jar)

Balsamic Roasted Onions & Beets by Arthur Épicerie Fine

Made with a little red wine vinegar and a touch of brown sugar. Perfect with cold meat (maybe leftovers from last night?), salad, or a cheese plate. ($9.99/4.6-oz. jar)

Rillettes: Maybe the most savory stuff on Earth.

Rillettes du Périgord

A spread made from duck meat that’s been simmered in spices, juices, and fat, so the meat can soak up as much flavor as possible.  ($13.99/7-oz. terrine)

Last summer my friends and I had a particularly lovely picnic. To supplement the simple fruit, charcuterie, and salads we’d brought, we stopped by Café Presse for some rillette sandwiches. I remember thinking, are these gonna be a little too heavy for a hot summer day? Later, eating one, I thought, you shouldn’t be allowed to think anymore. They were awesome. Make your own baguette sandwiches with this terrine of rillettes from Fabrique Delices, a brand we like very much. I’d add quick-pickled red onion and shredded carrots, but classic accompaniments such as cornichons and mustard would also be great.

Frozen crepes: Making Sunday even Sunday-ier.

White Toque Frozen Crêpes

Now in the freezer case: ready-to-go crêpes for the lazy brunch chef. Made with just nine ingredients that are all extremely pronounceable. Just thaw and heat and pile on the spreads/protein/fruit/you know what to do. ($7.99/package of 6)

*Now on sale: White Toque 15 Organic Mini Fillo Shells were $5.99, they’re now just $1.99! Maybe you have some fillings looking for a home. They are flaky and fancy and delicious.

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News 3/12 Saturday, Mar 12 2011 

Do goat cheeses taste better when topped with a cute label? Answer: No (but it doesn't hurt).

Cheese @ PG

A goat cheese with a bit of age and a few washed rind cheeses with a bit of funk.

Crottin Frais du Périgord

These tiny drums of barely aged goat’s milk cheese come from Périgord, a region of Bordeaux known for its goat cheese delicacies. A soft and creamy texture, with a nutty flavor. Fantastic when heated and placed on salads or toasts. $1.99/each or 2/$3

Oh, you monks.

Le Poteaupré

This oozy washed rind cow’s milk cheese was created by the Trappist monks of the Chimay Abbey in Belgium. Intensly earthy, with flavors of wild mushroom, toasted hazelnuts, and a finish that resembles buttered popcorn. Pair with a Chimay or a fruity red. $15.99/lb

Les Frères

Don’t you love it when siblings play nicely? Semi-soft washed rind cheese created by the Crave Brothers in Waterloo, Wisconson. This mild American cow’s milk cheese is earthy and pleasant with flavors of sea salt and bitter herbs.  Pair with white wine or sparkling. $15.99/lb

Trois Laits

Another stunning cheese from affineur Pascal Beillevaire. This Pyrenees washed rind cheese has the creaminess of cow’s milk, the nuttiness of sheep’s milk, and the subtle herbaceous tang of goat’s milk. Rich, complex, and beefy, with notes of Alpine grasses, marjoram, and sage. $32.99/lb

Wine @ PG

It's still cold; we still prefer warmth.

So, we may have gotten ahead of ourselves with talk of rosé season and patios. Here’s a few more delightful reds to keep you warm for this last bit (please?) of drizzly winter.

Domaine Astruc  Vin de Pays de L’Hérault Vielles Vignes Carignan 2008

Smoky aromas. Round on the mid-palate, with supple and balanced tannins. Minerals and spice, with a note of bitter chocolate on the finish. ($9.99)

Chateau Jouanin Bordeaux 2009

Explosive and full-bodied, this 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc is aged for 15 months in new and used oak. Flavors of menthol, eucalyptus, and juicy red and black fruits. ($12.99)

Domaine de Nalys Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2007

Delicious, with loads of minerals and plenty of length. 80% Grenache and 20% Syrah. 92 points: Stephen Tanzer, Wine Advocate. ($43)

Craves @ PG

Just think of all the Manhattans you could make.

Les Parisiennes griottines

A customer favorite. These delicious Morello cherries have been pitted and prepared in a Kirsch liqueur. Griottines are famous throughout the world for their freshness and refined taste. And the grand, Belle Epoque packaging is simply too much. Add to desserts, aperitifs, and cocktails. ($24.99/18.5oz jar)

Feed Your Mind @ PG

Called "the poet of the appetites" by John Updike.

We’ve brought in a range of titles from the luminous American gourmand, Mary Frances Kennedy Fisher (thankfully known as M.F.K. Fisher).  Corny, but: she’s a personal hero of mine. Consider this quote from “The Gastronomical Me” (emphasis mine):

“People ask me: Why do you write about food, and eating and drinking? Why don’t you write about the struggle for power and security, and about love, the way others do. They ask it accusingly, as if I were somehow gross, unfaithful to the honor of my craft. The easiest answer is to say that, like most humans, I am hungry. But there is more than that. It seems to me that our three basic needs, for food and security and love are so mixed and mingled and entwined that we cannot straightly think of one without the others. So it happens that when I write of hunger, I am really writing about love and the hunger for it, and warmth and the love of it and the hunger for it.”

In stock (all are necessary):

Consider the Oyster

The Gastronomical Me

An Alphabet For Gourmets

How to Cook A Wolf

As They Were

Two Towns in Provence

Long Ago In France: The Years in Dijon

Sister Age

 

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

 

Paris Grocery News 2/26 Saturday, Feb 26 2011 

"I take it with sugar!" -Paul Verlaine, noted poet, rebel, and absinthe addict.

Food & Sweets @ PG

A shipment of items so wonderful and weird, I have to mention them all.

Absinthe Sugar by Bonnecaze & Cie (5¢). These sugar cubes are ostensibly more “melty” (technical term) than other sugar cubes—the better to pour absinthe over, my dear. Also for people who love tiny things in old-timey packaging.

"To feel bright and alert."

Underberg ($1.79/each or $4.99/3). I was having a drink at 611 Supreme one night and saw a display of this herbal digestive sitting on the bar. The picture on the box—a lady in white offering up a handful of herbs that swirled and floated away to the heavens—was just too much. The bartender recommended we knock back the entire 20 mL (ingredients: water, alcohol, natural flavors from herbs and roots of the genus gentiana) all at once. I have not been sick since, and also I seem to be able to lift cars. No, not really. But this stuff packs one intense and herbaceous punch!

Assorted Chocolate Mini-bars by Ritter Sport (60¢). Many customers have mentioned their love for this German brand of chocolate, so we’ve brought these in as our latest evil plot against you (wherein we place candy at the register and you can’t resist it). Flavors: milk chocolate, hazelnut, marzipan, nougat, yogurt, cornflakes (my favorite!), and butter cookie.

Snack attack.

Orange Oat Crisps by Gille ($3.79). These biscuits from Sweden are infused with orange flavor and drizzled with Belgian chocolate. We love the light, crispy texture.

Crème Brûlée Mix by Dr. Oetker ($2.99). For the lazy chef, we think this brand of dessert mixes from Canada offers the best quality. And, as it says in tantalizing script on the box, it comes “With Caramelizing Sugar.”

Licorice Cats by Dutch Sweets ($2.99). They’re a bit chewy, semi-hard, and shaped like a cat. Eating black cats: perhaps a holdover from our ancient pagan days?

Double Salt Licorice by Gustaf’s ($3.79). We’ve had many requests for this! I fancy myself a bold eater of extreme flavors, but these supremely salty coins of licorice are only for the die-hard fan.

Thank you, Norway!

Gjetost Cheese by Ski Queen ($6.99). This golden brown block of cheese from Norway is made from a blend of cow’s and goat’s milk. The milk is cooked until it caramelizes, giving it a nutty, mildly sweet flavor. We love the red packaging with its IKEA font. It’s best when sliced with a cheese plane and served with fruit and crispbread. It’s known as a skier’s snack in Norway; throw your own après-ski party and introduce your friends to this amazing cheese.

More of our favorite thing: Food en Tube!

Mayonnaise by Mills ($3.29). It’s mayo in a tube from Norway. From their website: “ideal for garnising (sic), enhacing (sic) the taste of sandwiches, dips and sauces, weather (sic) it be for everyday use or on special occations (sic).” Yes!

Pure Almond Paste by Odense ($7.49). Made with mostly almonds, along with sugar and glucose syrup, this brand of almond paste imported from Denmark is widely heralded as the best by the choosy denizens of the internet (we’re included in that category).

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Recipe: Hearts of Palm Fries with Chipotle Mayo Saturday, Feb 26 2011 

More versatile than you may think!

We’ve loved hearts of palm in salads (my favorite: hearts of palm, fennel, and grape tomatoes) and pureed in soups. But as we saw in the March issue of Saveur, chef Julian Medina of Yerba Buena in Manhattan had the wisdom to coat them with panko breadcrumbs and fry them in canola oil with a side of spicy mayo. Drop by to grab a jar of Miguel & Valentino hearts of palm ($5.49) and get frying!

Recipe: Hearts of Palm Fries with Chipotle Mayo